Revel in bleak and digestible modern horror shorts in the form of Masters of Midnight, the latest collection from Corpus Press.
A warning, readers. The subject matter of these short stories was DARK and unrelenting. These are some of the most depressing stories I’ve had the pleasure(?!) of reading. I won’t point any fingers (TATTOOED ALL IN BLACK, ahem) but I was pretty devastated after finishing these up. These are not lighthearted or cheeky tales of horror-romp-madness. This is bleak, serious horror. In darkness, delight, indeed!
Many of the shorts were bite sized and spanning only a few pages- micro shorts, if you will- and were generally quick paced and sharply ended plots. Admittedly, I failed to connect with several of the stories. I either didn’t feel anything for the character or it was a subject matter that doesn’t have a home in my literary world. While all of them undoubtedly have a place in the hearts of other readers, I particularly enjoyed the setting in The Pipe by Israel Finn, the Halloween vibes of One Million Hits by Evans Light (this would have been a great addition to Doorbells at Dusk, another wonderful Corpus Press title), and the inventiveness of The Dogshit Gauntlet by John McKnee. I was glad to see the return of one of my favorite authors Joanna Koch as well. They were uniquely “modern” in a sense that they weren’t overly supernatural. No monsters, vampires, werewolves, etc. Psychological and spiritual themes, for a lack of a better term, mainly.
As a whole, Masters of Midnight is a well rounded collection of heavy, modern horror stories. Your heart will ache and your jaw will drop just from the pure desolation and ruthlessness of these gems. Seriously, don’t read this if you’re already sad. There are no happy endings ahead. Correction- there’ll be no justified, moral lesson happy endings ahead. Only straight up cold-son-of-a-bitch endings. These authors don’t fuck around.